Great Violin Concertos Hong Kong Sinfonietta City Hall Concert Hall The warm reception given to Daishin Kashimoto's performance of Beethoven's Violin Concerto was justified on a number of counts. The extensive first movement can drag, but not with conductor Yip Wing-sie thinking in longer, more urgent lines. Kashimoto showed a similar sense of freedom, more often applying rubato to press forward rather than wallow in restraint. It wasn't a journey of endless subtleties. Kashimoto's richly confident sound dominated the opening 25 minutes, supported by a technical assurance that produced a virtuosity that was so powerful it made you realise how infrequently it's played like this nowadays. The sudden melt to subdued tones created a magic that lingered into the slow movement. The finale took a while to find an appropriate levity but, having done so, wrapped up a stimulating recital. Beethoven's teacher, Haydn, was a master of levity. His Symphony No94 (Surprise) typifies his lightness of touch. Once the orchestra found a unanimous spring in the opening movement, all turned to smiles. Performances of Stravinsky's Concerto in E flat, Dumbarton Oaks, often reflect its stiffness of construction, but these 15 string and wind players gave life to fragmentary statements through excellent textural clarity, crisp phrasing and unanimity of articulation.